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Retention Interviews: Are You Asking Your Employees the Right Questions?

Episode 42

Episode overview

There’s no doubt that the Great Resignation is here and has been for a while. No leader wants to fall victim to this employment trend, but what can you do about it, really?

In this episode of the Hire Calling Podcast, Pete and Ricky talk through an article written by Jessica Stillman that suggests there are 9 questions to ask employees to keep retention high. Taking the place of a stay interview, Stillman believes asking these questions on a monthly basis will help your employee retention and prevent resignations.

Pete and Ricky discuss each question, offering their opinions, advice, and actions to take based on the answers received. Employee retention is on every leader’s mind right now, or at least it should be. As a leader, open communication and forming meaningful relationships with your employees is crucial. When it’s time to ask them the hard questions, you want to receive honest and genuine feedback in return.

Worried about employee retention within your organization? Tune in to find out which questions you should be asking!

80 minutes

View transcript

Additional resources

Questions you should be asking to maintain employee retention

In the past few months, when have you felt most motivated or energized in your work?

This question is going to tell you what sparks fire in your employee. Each of your employees is motivated differently and you should know exactly what that is. Asking this question gives you an opportunity to gain significant insight into the mindset of your employees, and then allow you to act accordingly, whether it’s the answer you hoped for or one that you were surprised by in a negative way.

What felt confusing or frustrating for you lately?

After finding out what makes your employees excited, learning what hasn’t been going well is just as important. If you’re committed to improving your organization, you need to be prepared for negativity along the way. Build trust with your employees and don’t take anything personally, the goal should be for them to feel comfortable speaking openly and honestly to you about any issues.

Is it clear why the work we do matters to the organization? 

As human beings, we need to belong somewhere. And the feeling of belonging becomes more solidified by understanding why your position in the workplace matters. As a leader, your goal should be to create an environment for your employees that’s difficult to leave. 

Which of your skills do you feel is not being used in your current role?

This question gives your employees the opportunity to describe what’s important to them. They may share skills you are completely unaware of, and that they are passionate and excited about. You want your employees to feel fulfilled in their organization or they will go and look for it elsewhere.

Pete Newsome

About Pete Newsome

Pete Newsome is the president of 4 Corner Resources, the nationally acclaimed staffing and recruiting firm he founded in 2005. His mission back then was the same as it is today: to do business in a personal way, while building an organization with boundless opportunities for ingenuity and advancement. When not managing 4 Corner’s growth or spending time with his family of six, you can find Pete sharing his sales and business expertise through public speaking, writing, and as the host of the Hire Calling podcast.

Ricky Baez

About Rick Baez

Efrain “Ricky” Baez Jr. is a published human resources professional specializing in strategically aligning HR competencies to business goals with a down to earth, common sense approach. Ricky is a four- year veteran of the United States Marine Corps and holds a Masters degree in Human Resources (MHR) from Rollins College and an SPHR certification from the Human Resources Certification Institute. Ricky is also a faculty member for the Master of Human Resources program at Rollins College in Winter Park, Florida.


Pete Newsome  00:12
You’re listening to the Hire Calling Podcast. I’m Pete Newsome. And this is your source for all things hiring, staffing, and recruiting. 

Pete Newsome  00:18
I am joined once again by Ricky Baez. But on a Monday today, not Friday. So Ricky, how are you at the beginning of this week?

Ricky Baez  00:26
It’s a little bit off because you’re right. Normally we do this on a Friday, the week already passed by. We’ve got some things that we talk about from the week, but not what are we talking about right now, hopefully, will be what the week looks like. So we’ll see if it works out that way.

Pete Newsome  00:40
Now instead of arriving at the finish line, we’re setting the tone for the rest of the week. Maybe this is how we should do it. 

Ricky Baez  00:46
Right! We’ll see. Let’s see what happens today.

Pete Newsome  00:48
We’ll see. We’ll see what kind of tangents we go on today. Well, well, good. Well, we are going to talk about those that articles that you found. That has to do with employee retention. So I’ll let you take it from here.

Ricky Baez  01:02
Yeah, so you know what, Pete, it’s, if we’ve all heard of the great resignation, that’s been the phrase that’s been used for the past, I want to say a year or so.

Pete Newsome  01:12
Longer. Pre pandemic, In fact.

Ricky Baez  01:16
The Great Resignation is a term that was Pre Pandemic. 

Pete Newsome  01:18
I thought we talked about that.

Pete Newsome  01:19
Yeah. It was coined by a professor at Texas A&M. 

Ricky Baez  01:24

Pete Newsome  01:25
And this was again in 2019. I believe, that when it was published. I know it was prior to any talk of COVID. It may have been 18. But I’m pretty sure it was 2019.

Ricky Baez  01:36
Well, I mean, it’s definitely ringing true right now, you know, you’ve got people just jumping ship left and right. And, you know, yes, money is one thing to keep people motivated and keep people, you know, just engage in what they do. 

Ricky Baez  01:50
But what some organizations fail to realize is just the total compensation piece that they really need to market, you know, to let them know, hey, there’s, there are other things that you get here that you may not get in other organizations. 

Ricky Baez  02:02
So, anyway, I’ve been looking into that, because, you know, I started teaching over at Rollins again, and for the summer session in the false about the start. And I was trying to find some relative articles about how to keep people and how to make sure that above and beyond money, how do you create a culture where people do stick around for the right reason?

Pete Newsome  02:20
You don’t mean keep people in your class?

Ricky Baez  02:28
Well, I mean, in class, too, right? But it, by the way, I teach it in such a way that trust me, they’re engaged.

Pete Newsome  02:36
I have no doubt, no one would doubt that. But you said so I just want to make sure.

Ricky Baez  02:42
Yeah, keep people engaged at work.

Pete Newsome  02:44
At work, right?

Pete Newsome  02:45
Not in your class. Yes. You don’t need help there. Okay, got it. 

Ricky Baez  02:50
I’m already loving Monday. 

Pete Newsome  02:51
All right, Monday, Monday is checked so far. Okay.

Ricky Baez  02:54
So here’s the article that I found that I don’t know, I sent this to you. I don’t know if it wasn’t a Wednesday night. You know, having my scotch and I’m like, oh, man, that’s when you know, you’re old. That’s when you know, you’re over on a Wednesday night. You’re having a scotch, you finish watching Jeopardy. Right? 

Ricky Baez  03:10
With whatever host they have. And I’m like, you know who would like this Pete?

Pete Newsome  03:18
A work article? Yes. And you’re right.

Ricky Baez  03:20
Yeah. It’s, it’s from Inc, right? And it’s the nine questions you must ask your employees once a month if you want them to stick around by Jessica Stillman. So I’m like, let me send this to Pete. Let me see what he thinks, ah, perfect timing. 

Ricky Baez  03:38
Because this is what I’m talking about in class is what a lot of clients are asking me about and it’s a timely subject for us to talk about here, which you and I had this conversation last year, right, trying to figure out what are some creative ways we can come up with to keep people on board? Right.

Pete Newsome  03:53
Oh, wait. Yeah, we did. We’ve talked about the importance of perks and benefits outside of regular compensation, as you were just saying, and, you know, the world continues to evolve. So I think this is a timely conversation for us. And everyone is not as worried about employee retention, I think it seems to be pretty crazy. Six months ago, the job market has cooled down a bit. 

Pete Newsome  04:18
But it’s still a very important thing. It always is important. But unemployment is very low. Still more jobs and people I don’t think that’s going to change. So employee retention needs to be top of mind for everyone.

Ricky Baez  04:32
Yes, so nine questions according to this article, by Jessica Stillman, she says if you ask these nine questions on a regular basis, or just once a month, you’ll be able to get real-time data real-time pulse information that would help you make the fly adjustments on what you need to do to be proactive and prevent somebody from leaving instead of waiting for the exit interview after somebody already decided to leave you to get raw data from them.

Pete Newsome  05:01
Now you’re a big fan. I know, because you’ve implemented it. For us at 4 Corner Resources of stay interviews, is this, is this along the same lines? Or is this something you do separately from those? 

Ricky Baez  05:13
So this right here, if this is done properly, would take the place of a stay interview. Because they because, you know, the reason we have a stay interview is that we feel whether reactively or proactively depending on the situation, we feel like we’re just missing something, we feel like there’s just something that we as leaders are not aware of, that we should be aware of. 

Ricky Baez  05:37
So we can, you know, just just just flip the switches that are needed to make sure people are engaged. But if we do this on a regular basis, how I understand that it eliminates the need of going through the pulse survey process. Because if you do these once a month, you get the right information. And you’ll be I don’t want to say rockin and rollin. It’s not that you’d be changing lanes every night, all the time. 

Ricky Baez  06:01
But you’ll be in the know in real-time, which I think is really valuable, especially if you want to retain the right talent and be efficient about it.

Pete Newsome  06:10
No doubt, no doubt, it makes perfect sense. And I’m glad you had a chance to clarify that. So these would be in addition to I believe in the article, she suggested sort of a monthly touch base to get, these questions answered. Or at least as I said, get your finger on the pulse of your staff.

Ricky Baez  06:28
On a one-on-one, like a one-on-one basis. I mean, that’s, to be honest, that’s how I would do it. I think the best way for, any organization to really get true information is to start with building a culture of trust. Right? If you start building that culture of trust, people will start trusting you more starting to trust the process. And he’s telling you some things that otherwise, it wouldn’t be easy for them to do so.

Pete Newsome  06:55
Why do you think sorry to cut you off? Continued thought, but I do have a question. Why do you are you doing? You’re gonna let me go. I cut you off completely.

Ricky Baez  07:05
No. What do you mean? No, I’m drinking water.

Pete Newsome  07:10
I want you to continue your thought, but I think I think I interrupted you too much for you to do that.

Ricky Baez  07:15
Okay, I’m sorry. I wasn’t gonna say no, no, go ahead. Because I think you’re going to ask me, Why do I think people are people are not as trusting as we think you should?

Pete Newsome  07:25
Well, why Yes, exactly. So why is trust so hard to come by? And I assume, maybe I shouldn’t assume but I am. Thank you mean, trust in the sense that the employees have to feel open. vulnerable, if you will, maybe that’s the wrong word, but comfortable, sharing concerns, right, sharing whatever is on their mind, good, good, bad, or indifferent. 

Pete Newsome  07:54
Is that what you mean? Like that, that requires trust to be open and honest with someone? Or is it a different kind of trust?

Ricky Baez  08:03
I mean, it does. It’s, I do mean that right? Because it looks, historically, employees have been its chances are every employee that you and I have ever met, has worked for a crappy company. 

Ricky Baez  08:17
Right? Historically, it’s, I’m guaranteeing that happened. And using that assumption, here, I am using assumptions using that assumption.

Pete Newsome  08:26
Good, we are even.

Ricky Baez  08:30
What happens is, is that that one negative experience ruins their entire experience everywhere else. Right. Now, I’m here to say they’re human, we’re human. I completely understand that. But you know what, it’s an us as the leadership team for any organization to break that for them. 

Ricky Baez  08:49
Now, I would venture out to, to, to say this as well, Pete, I will say they have a play in this as well because you cannot let your experience from one organization ruin your experience from every other organization. 

Ricky Baez  09:02
But then at the same time, I understand why they feel that way. Right. That’s why as leaders, I know we have the power to step in proactively and say, Look, let me I want to make a genuine effort to build trust with you. I mean, it’s weird something to say that, to me, for me to verbalize, sounds weird, but the actions should be much louder than those words. 

Pete Newsome  09:23
And that’s the point you just made. I’m glad you got there. Because to say trust me, is almost a hollow statement, no, show that you are worthy of the trust. I think what is always surprising to me is that it’s not granted, going in if you’re going to choose to accept a role with an organization and vice versa for an organization to hire someone that mutual trust should be in place from the beginning and if it’s not, you shouldn’t enter into that relationship in the first place. 

Pete Newsome  09:57
And but I don’t even though I think that’s how things should be, should be a word that just really gets very far we know that, that it’s not reality. The reality is there is a level of distrust, I think more so from the employee perspective than the employer’s perspective. 

Pete Newsome  10:20
Or I can tell you if we hire someone, we trust them going in, or if we feel there’s a reason not to, we won’t hire them. I think that applies to nearly every scenario that I can think of in hiring, but I think employees are inherently skeptical of the employer to some degree is that we’re off-topic. But is that something you’d agree with?

Ricky Baez  10:46
I do agree with that. It’s but yes, we’re kind of off-topic. But we will. But we are on because every one of these questions that the answer in this article is designed to give the leader information that’s relevant to the organization that will help the leader pull the right levels to make sure the employee has what they need to be productive at work. Right. 

Ricky Baez  11:09
So that that that conversation how the leader approaches, responding to those answers. That’s what’s going to build the trust, not the questions on their own, how they handle the information Sure, makes sense. If we have some back and forth dialogue as to why things should be this way, in that way, not not not trying to quiet each other’s voices but to really fully understand what the other person is trying to say. 

Ricky Baez  11:36
And once the employee goes home, then either like, really, they’re really listening to me, they’re really paying attention, especially if that’s something they’ve never seen before, they’re still going to be a little bit skeptical. But they’re going to give you a little bit more inch of that trust until next thing, you know, it’s that that solid foundation is there. 

Ricky Baez  11:55
And Pete, once you have that, you know this once you have that, there, there is nothing. Well, let me take it back. There is something that could break that transfer, right? But there’s very little that can shake it from the outside in. And then people stick around other people, other organizations across the way will offer them $20,000 more a year. 

Ricky Baez  12:15
And they’ll say no, again, because they find this culture over here much more valuable. Once you’ve done that you’ve won. 

Pete Newsome  12:21
It’s interesting, as you’re talking, I’m thinking about our last show that we did when we were discussing generations and children in particular. And I made a comment about how I think children should be seen more than heard sort of like an old school. 

Pete Newsome  12:42
You know, take right, if you remember that part of the conversation. That wasn’t exactly what I said. But that was like the principal. Yeah, that was the principal thing. Yeah, exactly. And I was joking around a little bit with our marketing team, knowing as they were putting the podcast up and creating the show notes. I said, Yeah, you’ll hear some opinions from me on that. 

Pete Newsome  13:03
That might not be too popular with some folks. But the inverse is true with employees. So if students or children are a captive audience, so to speak, right, they haven’t earned the right to be in their opinion to be irrelevant in every situation. 

Pete Newsome  13:22
But it is the polar opposite when it comes to employees where employees show up every day or not by choice. And so you have to earn the right, the privilege of having them continue to show up as the employer now I think it’s mutual, I think the employee has to earn the right to continue to be invited back day to day eight, I see that. 

Pete Newsome  13:48
But so I just find it interesting, as you’re talking, I could not agree more that you have to listen to your employees. But you also have to create this scenario or the environment where there’s something to listen to, where they’ll be comfortable communicating. 

Pete Newsome  14:10
So when you talk about trust, that’s what I think of I think you have to if you’re going to share with me something that you don’t like, professional, personal concern, whatever it might be an organizational concern, a cultural concern, whatever, then you have to be able to trust that it’s not going to come back to bite you that there’s not going to be anything negative that comes from that. 

Pete Newsome  14:39
And I’ll tell you as the employer, I crave that feedback. Now we want it to be done productively and with good, good intentions in mind. Of course, not complaining for the sake of complaining but it’s what makes us better. When without that information. We’re guessing and I don’t want to guess I don’t want to guess what I’m saying. Always are thinking I want to know, whether we always agree is different. Right? That’s, that’s a different thing. 

Pete Newsome  15:06
But we need to, if someone’s unhappy, I want to know about it in every scenario, can we fix it? We’ll try if we can, hopefully, we can if we can’t, well, that’s a different discussion. But there’s no, there’s no penalty for that. And I get I don’t think that’s abnormal, I think. I’d like to think that most employers, the vast majority of employers would feel the same way.

Ricky Baez  15:35
So I don’t know if you realize the impact of what you just said, Pete. Because it’s, it’s, it’s, it’s really impactful. Because you’re right, we have to listen to what they say. But you said, we have something of something along the lines that, yes, we have to listen to them. 

Ricky Baez  15:52
But we have to give them a reason to say something. 

Pete Newsome  15:55

Ricky Baez  15:56
We have to give them a reason to speak. And that’s impactful. Because that is right, there is exactly what leadership is supposed to do. The question is, is it impactful positively? Or is it impactful? Negatively? Right? Either way, you’re gonna hear about it. 

Ricky Baez  16:13
But as leaders, we’re supposed to give them that reason to say something, here’s the environment, here’s where I want you to work. Here’s where I want you to showcase that skill set, that I’m paying for you to be on this team and ask for a reciprocal agreement, you get, you know, cash in your pocket, whatever the case may be. But give me some feedback. And how’s it going? How can we make it better?

Pete Newsome  16:32
And get getting that feedback, as you know, as I’ve learned is easier said than done. So even though you crave it, it doesn’t mean you’re going to get it and I’ve been the victim of that I say, victim, not I’ve been on the bad end of that, where over the years if there’s we’ve had employees who’ve left and expressed their dislike in some area that we had no idea. 

Pete Newsome  17:00
And so that’s one of the reasons why you’re here. I want the reasons why we asked you, to join us and help us fix those things. And you’ve come a long way. That’s why I mentioned the stay interviews because it’s one of the things you implemented for that very reason because we want to know, as soon as possible bad news early is good news in every scenario. And I but I don’t, maybe maybe I need to think through this a little bit more. 

Pete Newsome  17:24
But it’s possible and probably likely that not that employees are hesitant for good reason. Because of past experiences. You said that a few minutes ago, and I and that, that makes a lot of sense to me. But what was interesting about this article, and why I wanted to have a chance to talk through it is because this helps get those answers out in the open, and helps help set a stage where employees will be comfortable communicating and sharing. 

Pete Newsome  17:54
Because of the way the questions were asked. It’s a different, different twist on maybe what you’ve done in the past, then I think I think that’s worthy of exploration.

Ricky Baez  18:05
Yeah, so So you know, I’ll dive in right to that first one. So out of these nine, the first one that that is, is in this article is in the past few months, when have you felt most motivated or energized in your work? If at all? To me, to me that the answer to that question is going to tell you what sparks fire into that employee because not every employee is sparked the same way. Right? 

Ricky Baez  18:34
We talked about the four different communication styles people who are direct the people who are free spirits, people who are considerate, and your systematics, right? Everybody’s motivated differently. So if you ask this question, they will tell you what are they motivated about. So now you know for the future all right.

Ricky Baez  18:54
If a project comes up because I know somebody peed when I was interviewing her the interview was going great. But as soon as I mentioned telling a story via Excel, she lit up and I mean her eyes are dilated like it’s almost like one of those Harry Styles singer guys came on stage. I don’t know. I don’t know who the pop stars are. 

Pete Newsome  19:19
I think you hit the mark. I think.

Ricky Baez  19:21
People understand what I’m saying. Right? No, but she lit up. That’s when I knew Oh, as soon as we get a project that’s heavy, on on on Excel, I’m gonna give that to her. That keeps employees fulfilled that keeps them motivated. So, but the key to this one is Pete, if they say, Well, I haven’t. 

Ricky Baez  19:40
So now you’ve had to take deeper questions. Sure. In the past few months, you haven’t felt more motivated or energized. That’s you strike red flags all over the place to take a deeper dive into why not? Now, how do we take that dive? That’s how it’s going to build that trust. Because a leader who doesn’t have a backbone, a leader who feels intimidated easily, who doesn’t really know what he or she is doing would take that as a negative. 

Ricky Baez  20:09
Why haven’t you been working? So what have you been doing these past three months? What about this? And then the employee shuts down.

Pete Newsome  20:16
Absolutely. Well, that’s a, you have to be pretty bold out of the gate to answer that you haven’t been motivated. But could you imagine? Yeah, I mean, but I think that that really makes the point. 

Pete Newsome  20:31
You as an employer, if you ask the question, in this desk, this specific question, you get the answer that the motivation hasn’t really been there, and you react, you punish the employee, for lack of a better way to put it, you’re never gonna, you’re never gonna get truthful answers, you can, and Ward’s probably gonna get around. Right? Yeah. That’s happening. 

Ricky Baez  20:56
Now, let’s address that real quick. I don’t care how you tell employees, hey, you know what, keep this to yourself. 

Ricky Baez  21:02
They’re going to talk, they’re going to talk, and let’s just assume that employees are going to talk and they can write, they can, especially if, if things are not going their way, or the way they should, you know, they are going to talk. So we have to assume that that information is going to get around.

Pete Newsome  21:20
Is that a breach of trust?

Ricky Baez  21:25
At first, at first, I’m perfectly okay with it. I’m perfectly okay with it. My job here as an HR leader, Pete, is to make sure people are comfortable and communicating and tell them exactly what’s going on. 

Ricky Baez  21:39
So I can help them better. 

Pete Newsome  21:41

Ricky Baez  21:41
And if and if I feel if I make them feel better about communicating bad news to you, to me, or to anybody else, I don’t care what it said, as long as they know how it’s going to be addressed. They’re going to be okay with it. But you know, like, like, like any, like any relationship? 

Ricky Baez  21:57
I mean, could you imagine going out with somebody on the very first date, and then asking him to go on a cruise review, the very next week, I’ve seen that happen before. And I’ve seen people get smacked for that. So because they haven’t built that trust, the same thing goes for this. 

Ricky Baez  22:13
So the first few times that we do this, we have to expect that people are going to talk behind the scenes until they start to realize, wow, they really mean business. And then they’re going to do exactly what they’re supposed to. I’ve seen it happen time and time again.

Pete Newsome  22:29
Well, I do think it’s a really good question, though, is you, you get an opportunity to gain significant insight into the mindset of the employee. And then you can proceed accordingly. Whether it’s the answer you hoped for or one that you were surprised by in a negative way. 

Pete Newsome  22:48
But I think avoiding any negative outcome from it is just got to be there for the employer. I mean, I, as I was saying, earlier, I want to know if someone’s unhappy, you can kind of tell when someone is happier, maybe you maybe can’t, but that’s easy. It’s the ones that aren’t happy that you have something you have to follow up to do you have more work to do. And it doesn’t always mean I think you’d agree with this, maybe not, but that you’re going to be able to resolve the issue. 

Pete Newsome  23:22
Some issues you can’t fix if someone in this has happened, this is the real world, someone wanted to be a teacher who worked for us that was their goal, that was their dream can make that happen. We don’t have teacher openings internally, we could help find a job for that person. 

Pete Newsome  23:39
But there are certain problems that the employer can’t solve. But that’s okay. It’s better to talk that out. And I’ve had conversations with employees over the years at times say, Look, if you actually a real, real, real story, one of our most valued employees, I won’t name names because it was a private thing, but expressed that they were unhappy with the role that they were in and was trusting enough to share that openly and honestly. 

Pete Newsome  24:12
And I said, listen, give me 30 days, I had a solution. And I said, let me see if we can work this out. And if not, at the end of those 30 days, I will personally help you find a great job. And that’s what we did. And we didn’t have to get to those 30 days we resolve the issue much sooner and move the person into a new role and this couldn’t have worked out any better. 

Pete Newsome  24:41
And so that I can’t tell you how much I appreciated that as the employer who that that that took a lot of faith and trust and I will always appreciate those things.

Ricky Baez  24:57
And that’s not something that’s easy to do. On the employee’s person or though receiving neither, right because you’re being presented with this trust platter. Right. And you have to be careful with that trust platter. Right. So it’s, it’s not a one-way street. 

Ricky Baez  25:14
So you’re right it, it, it does take a specific backbone to be able to be trusted because that’s a gamble, because they don’t know, I’m not seeing you, but a regular person to communicate something like that to a boss who they may or may not know how they’re going to receive it. The boss might freak out and say goodbye, you’re done. Get out of here, leave and that’s the fear. Right?

Pete Newsome  25:37
Well, it happened to me as an employee. 

Ricky Baez  25:42
So you communicated that to a leader and they said forget it you are gone.

Pete Newsome  25:45
I didn’t say it exactly like that. But I did communicate that I was in a role. This was more than 20 years ago now. But that wasn’t where I saw myself long-term. And I bet a great employee had been promoted multiple times. And they held it against I took it personally, and I was saying, I don’t want to be part of your organization long term. And I was effectively asking for help. 

Pete Newsome  26:10
It was a large organization. And my relationship with that person changed overnight. And it wasn’t over, It was just subtle things. I could just tell that I was no longer the, you know, the teacher’s favorite or teacher’s pet, which I kind of was meant for this person. It just wasn’t where I wanted to be long-term. 

Pete Newsome  26:34
And to be honest about it. And that’s always stuck with me. That that Okay, so when I think of why trust isn’t inherent, yeah, there’s, people have scars, from those things. But we try really, really hard to set the stage where that’s not necessary.

Ricky Baez  26:55
Well, this is what I want leaders to know, because this is this, this piece is important, Pete especially to create that trust, that if you have an employee that tells you don’t want to be here anymore, right? We can’t as leaders, we cannot take that personally. 

Ricky Baez  27:11
Regardless of how that feels to us, we got to put those feelings aside, because the employees have reasons they have their own reasons as to why of course look into it. Right, we should look into it to find out why. But that that investigative process, which is I shouldn’t even call it that. That inquiry should be an inquiry for understanding, not something that could turn the conversation into punitive like a disciplinary issue. 

Pete Newsome  27:38

Ricky Baez  27:38
Because what leaders do with that be shut down the intelligence again, the talk, they will shut down any other possible conversation that could have come down the pike for you, because on how that will pose handle so yes, that is definitely how to handle it.

Pete Newsome  27:53
Yeah, no two dreams are alike. That’s, it’s very personal.

Ricky Baez  27:58
That’s true. That’s what I noticed Freddy Krueger, parts one and two, they were okay. Part three was horrible. I didn’t like it. Now, for that one, I know you’re always joking, be like, we’re gonna lose the audience. Nobody caught that reference. That’s only Gen X.

Pete Newsome  28:14
And we talked about that last week. Yes, we did. Those we did. Alright, so. Alright, the next question, what do we have?

Ricky Baez  28:21
The next one is? Is it clear why the work you do matters to the organization? A lot of leaders miss how important this question is. A lot of leaders do. You know, as human beings, we have a need to belong somewhere. Right? Whether it’s a family, whether it’s a group, whether it’s a military, whether a gang, whatever the case may be, we all have a need to belong somewhere. 

Ricky Baez  28:48
And that belonging gets more solidified if you know how your position in that organization, how your position affects the bottom line. So if an employee tells you Yes, I know exactly how the job I do over here affects the goal of the organization. If they say yes, it is clear, you’re good, you’re golden, the only thing you have to do is how to figure out how to keep that line clear for that person. 

Ricky Baez  29:15
But if they say no, again, a deeper dive something is missing. Because if the employee doesn’t know why he or she does what they do, to make sure the organization is profitable, there’s a problem there. That’s a problem because they’re only doing what their job tells them or dictates it does base on the job description, but could you imagine how hard they would work for you if they knew what the bottom line looked like and how they affected it? 

Ricky Baez  29:43
Well, we’re gonna move mountains for you.

Pete Newsome  29:45
If I tell you what I like and don’t like about this question I don’t like that it’s a yes or no question. It because it could you depending on the employee, you ask you could in there and I see only one on the less that she asked her to know, and as someone with them He currently has two teenage sons and has had two teenagers prior to that, I will tell you a yes or no questions often get you a yes or no answer and nothing else. 

Ricky Baez  30:10
That’s true. 

Pete Newsome  30:11
How was school today? Good. Silence. Okay, so what I do like is the nature of the question and the implication of it, as you just said, it gives you the opportunity to confirm or not, or explain why the employee is so important. And I think that gets lost in the day to day of work that you show up in every role should matter. 

Pete Newsome  30:38
And if that’s not a clear answer, maybe it’s an opportunity to evaluate why whether that role is necessary, because when I look back to some of the larger employers I’ve worked for, I have one in mind, in particular, there were a lot of roles that I often wondered what the value of it was to the organization that I saw others in. And that can happen at a big company. 

Pete Newsome  30:58
So I think it’s a really healthy area to explore and stuff like that. It’s yes or no.

Ricky Baez  31:03
So I get that. And, you know, it’s the new managing director for the crew. And I don’t know, if you want me to say his name or not, he and I were having a great conversation about something similar to this, because he and I 20 years ago or so, worked in the same organization. Right?

Ricky Baez  31:21
And I shared with him, that I only spent nine months there. And he’s like, why? And I told them because I met my manager twice. I was hired, and that they are resigned. And he’s like, whoa, and I’m like, yeah, that’s, that’s, that’s, um, and the manager was shocked that I was read you doing so? 

Ricky Baez  31:38
Well I mean, I don’t know. I don’t know how I’m doing. I just come in, I clock in, I do my job. And miraculously, every other Thursday, I get a paycheck over there.

Pete Newsome  31:48
We don’t mind talking about Mike, Ricky, who you’re referring to but a lot of people might want to know the name of that company. Because that sounds like a dream, a dream job for a lot of people.

Ricky Baez  31:59
Well, the organization is not there anymore.

Pete Newsome  32:02
Well, there you go. No surprise to that, either.

Ricky Baez  32:06
But, you know, if, if I had a better relationship with my boss, and if I knew how my job affected the bottom line, it wouldn’t have it because I left easily, it was really easy to drive me away to take my focus away from that goal. Right. And our job as leaders is to make it incredibly difficult to take away the focus of our employee’s goals in a positive way. Right? Obviously.

Pete Newsome  32:33
I think what you were just saying sounded really interesting to me. It was easy to leave, right? But the goal should be to create an environment that’s really hard to leave. Yes, that’d be bad. If you operate it with that in mind, always. Then everything kind of falls into place around that. 

Pete Newsome  32:55
I mean, I want it I’ll think through that a little bit more, maybe we’ll talk about that in the future shows how to create I mean, what does that really look like in an environment that’s, that’s hard to leave, but I think expressing interest, creating a trusting environment that everything we’re talking about today is certainly a part of that. 

Pete Newsome  33:14
But from a bigger picture standpoint, you should have you should set the bar really high if you can, like let’s when people leave we’ve had people resign in tears because it’s not what they wanted to do or that it’s they were going to do something else whether it was move or pursue do a degree a different job, a different industry, whatever. 

Pete Newsome  33:40
But it was still hard for them to leave where we are I mean to me that’s always a means we’ve done our job as a leadership team.

Ricky Baez  33:48
It does and we talked and yes and this is another show but we did talk about this when we had our leadership training late last year that it’s we should in order to create employee loyalty and where employees really love where they are. You want to create an environment where an employee is more afraid of letting their boss down and being written up. 

Pete Newsome  34:09
Yep, that’s great.

Ricky Baez  34:10
If you create that environment when they’re afraid of and you and I actually I think you and I talked about that when we were having lunch before I came on board right because we get to that lunch was three and a half hours.

Pete Newsome  34:22
Was it really?

Ricky Baez  34:23
Wasn’t it really because I think you and Stacey got tickets? 

Pete Newsome  34:26
I know I remember getting the ticket.

Ricky Baez  34:29
So yeah, we had a good conversation but yeah, that is our job as a leadership team, but yeah, man, it was really easy for me to leave. I did not blink twice, leaving that job.

Pete Newsome  34:38
Interesting, well shame on them. 

Ricky Baez  34:40
Yeah, absolutely. 

Ricky Baez  34:42
Alright, so here’s the third one. The wisdom which of your skills do you feel is not being used in your current role?

Pete Newsome  34:52
What a great, what a great setup to hear. People describe what’s important to them, that you may be completely unaware of me, I don’t There’s nothing I don’t like about that question.

Ricky Baez  35:05
That is perfect. Perfect. Especially, you know, like that story that I shared earlier that one person I, I interviewed, right, Had I not asked her about Excel, I still would have hired her because me it’s hurt her conditions really good hurt her output an HR is awesome. 

Ricky Baez  35:23
But could you imagine if I never asked that question, right? I never put on any project. Any project that would exhale heavy. So, yes, she’s been fulfilled in other areas of, of her job, but her passion? If I’m not if I am not affecting the passion, then what am I doing? Yep. What am I doing? Right? 

Ricky Baez  35:45
So that is a great question is so if they say yes, let’s find out what that is to keep it. If they say no, let’s find out what that is. Because employees who are not fulfilled in their organizations or employees who look for fulfillment elsewhere? That’s a great way to put it. Yep. All right. So that one is easy enough. The fourth one, is there any part of the team you wish you got to interact with more?

Pete Newsome  36:12
I don’t like that one.

Ricky Baez  36:13
Why? I like it.

Pete Newsome  36:16
Because you’re gonna get an answer. Frequently, well, okay. Maybe maybe it’s not that I dislike it. I think it’s a problematic question, potentially. And that’s okay. So if your goal is really to get things to the surface that would otherwise remain buried, then that’s a good question. 

Pete Newsome  36:38
But you have to be prepared to have answers frequently that you don’t want. So, yes, I want to get involved in social media. Well, you’re an accountant. We don’t necessarily want you involved in social media.

Ricky Baez  36:58
I mean, that’s a great example of I can give more. I mean, I get it.

Pete Newsome  37:06
But let me tell you where I’m coming from with this. Yeah. I’ve frequently been asked. So the bulk of our staff at four corner resources are recruiters and salespeople but more recruiters, anything else where a staffing company, no surprise, new recruiters, over the years have frequently come up and said I want to go be also part of fill in the blank. 

Pete Newsome  37:29
And there’s just no great opportunity to do that when there isn’t necessarily an opportunity to do that. And so inviting that question with little expectation, depending on the scenario that you can actually do anything about it. After that? I’d rather not ask that. Ask it in that particular way.

Ricky Baez  37:53
Okay. It, I get that the reason I like this question Pete is, is I’ve actually asked this before, in, in, in my previous job, because I did have somebody in an HR specialist position to win a lot of tactical work admin work, right. And then just in a regular casual one on ones we were at Chili’s, I know I went there a lot with them. 

Ricky Baez  38:16
You know, we just had a conversation like, Hey, so what? What do you like about HR? Because who, gets up every morning and says, I want to do human resources? Right? You know, I’ve always jumped around them. And she flat out told me, you know what, I love the employer relations aspects. I love when you go in and do investigations because I like to train my teams up. 

Ricky Baez  38:37
So whenever I did an investigation that I could talk about, I come back to my team, here’s the situation, how would you handle it to give them exposure to it? I didn’t know that she liked that aspect. Because everything about her demeanor told me she didn’t like it. Right? But she told me and I’m like, Oh, I didn’t know that. I thought you hated it. To be honest. That’s why I kept doing all these other things. 

Ricky Baez  38:57
And when she said that, I’m like, Alright, let me test that. So I included her in some investigations with me. And man, five years later, now she’s a director of employer relations at a large company.

Pete Newsome  39:08
All right. Well, that’s, that’s a great example of it, of where it can go well. Oh, well, yeah. Maybe it could be phrased a little bit differently. Something like, what part of your role do you wish you could do more of? Yeah, but I don’t know that just having been asked the question more than a few times over the years. 

Pete Newsome  39:35
Unprompted, hey, I’d really like to be doing XYZ. And if XYZ has nothing to do with your job function. That’s a tough thing, right? I don’t want to, I don’t want to shoot down anyone’s ambition far from it. But a lot of times, it’s just not practical. And so I just think you’d get a lot of answers by asking that question frequently that you won’t be able to do anything about.

Ricky Baez  40:03
I hear that.

Pete Newsome  40:04
That’s my take. But it’s still depending on the situation.

Ricky Baez  40:10
If you were to write this article, it’ll be not. It’ll be a question. 

Pete Newsome  40:14
Well, we’re not done yet. Might be sure. Let’s keep going.

Ricky Baez  40:17
Got it. All right. Here’s the fifth one. How do you feel about the current level of social interaction across the team? This is big. I think this one is huge. Because a lot of people won’t be open and honest. Or maybe they don’t know. Right? 

Ricky Baez  40:33
Because sometimes, especially with this pandemic, now three years almost into it, whereas zoom, and teams and all these other areas, all these other tools that we use to interact and replace that human interaction three years ago. So sometimes when employees feel it’s I’m not a doctor, right, but if they feel down to feel the press, you know, I would like to think chances are, it’s because of the lack of interaction. 

Ricky Baez  40:59
And they don’t know that it is that but if you ask and say, Hey, how do you feel about the social interaction between the 13? If the, if the trust is there, they’re going, to be honest. And they’ll tell you, you know what, I wish we’ll meet more. I wish we could have more one on ones. I wish we could have more, whatever. But I think that’s a great question. I mean, are you agreeing with it or not?

Pete Newsome  41:22
So I’m thinking of a couple of different things. When you say social, and I really shouldn’t write the question, but when you think of social interaction, do you think of it as a nonwork-related activity? Or do you mean interacting? Well, I think social I think nonwork. 

Pete Newsome  41:39
Because it’s not phrased to say, interaction period, it specifically says social. Is that do you interpret it that way?

Ricky Baez  41:49
That’s a good question. Because I interpreted it, it’s how you interact socially. So to me, hmm. That VAs making you pause now. Right? Because you’re right, I think is social. It’s nonwork-related. But isn’t there some non work related interaction weaving into a work-related interaction?

Pete Newsome  42:12
Maybe, but depending on the company, maybe not. And depending on the job, the situation? So that’s why I think that’s a question another one that may not be universally a good idea to ask. 

Pete Newsome  42:27
But, but I guess there’s no harm in asking, as long as you are prepared for an answer that you may not be able to do anything about, for example, if you’re in a job, an hourly, an hourly job, that’s, that’s virtual, right? Where does social interaction come into play? With that, really, if you’re spread throughout the country if you are? If the job really just does it, is it conducive to getting together and socializing? 

Pete Newsome  43:01
You know that that but but but on the other hand, if the goal is to understand how your employees really think and feel, by all means, ask so if you have an employee who craves social interaction, and the job doesn’t afford that for them, well, then you, it is worth knowing. 

Pete Newsome  43:16
But once again, that may lead to some places that give an employee a reason to reconsider whether they’re in the right role. But I don’t know that that’s inherently bad, either. I mean, the goal is retention. And I’m, I guess that’s where I’m struggling if the goal is to.

Pete Newsome  43:37
I’m wearing two different thinking, I can’t separate these hats right now, where 111 hat is my zengig hat, which is our new employee advice, brand, and website where I would tell employees if you crave social interaction, your job doesn’t afford that, then you’re in the wrong job. Okay? 

Pete Newsome  43:58
Conversely, if you want to be left alone, other than doing your job, and you’re forced to be more social outside of the workplace, and I’ve been in that situation to where I, I was too much, I wasn’t allowed to do what I wanted to do. After work, I was told what to do and that I had to sit was really like drinking the Kool-Aid sort of situation. I didn’t, I didn’t want to do that long-term. 

Pete Newsome  44:26
So you have to find the right balance there. And that’s a very personal individual thing. So that’s my zengig hat, where you should find what makes you happy, as best you can. If we’re talking retention, that might not be the best one to ask. 

Ricky Baez  44:41
So you know what I’m with you and with that is a really good point. Because how do you feel about the current level of social interaction across the team? Unlike any other question, if you say you don’t like it, right, or you don’t want to interact with anybody You shouldn’t I mean, maybe you should dig a little bit to see if maybe people are treating them bad. 

Ricky Baez  45:04
But if the employee just wants to be left alone and do their job, then leave them alone. 

Pete Newsome  45:10
All right, I’m gonna put you on the spot. I’m putting you on the spot for Ricky’s advice to hiring managers or managers, or HR professionals. Should you want to do what you want? Should you try to retain employees? who ultimately isn’t in the perfect job for them?

Ricky Baez  45:36
Okay, should I have tried to retain employees who are perfect?

Pete Newsome  45:40
Who are not in the perfect job for themselves.

Ricky Baez  45:45
I learned this lesson a long time ago, I have the answer. And the answer is no. The answer is no. If they if somebody’s leaving, right, because they don’t like it here, whatever the case may be. I’m gonna try to fix the things that I can fix culturally right? 

Ricky Baez  46:03
But if I can’t do any of that, if there’s nothing I can do if the employee just doesn’t feel fulfilled, or doesn’t matter what I do, I’m not going to try to keep because now I have a hostage situation. Right? I’m not going to know I do because I’m, oh, man. I’m going to call her out. Her name is Holly. If you listening sorry, I love her to death. Yeah, Holly, Holly, Holly. And I, we used to be she was the VP of the organization I was working for. 

Ricky Baez  46:31
And then I was the HR manager. And she found out that I had employees coming to my employees coming to me saying, hey, look, I’m not happy here. I mean, I am with what I’m doing. I can’t move up unless you die, or hit the lotto, or leave. Right. Right. So I’m like, Look, I completely understand that. So she told me, I’m going to be looking elsewhere. Right?

Ricky Baez  46:58
And I told her, You know what, I’m going to help you. I’m going to help you. Now, the only way I would help is if they’re performing, right, right, and not performing now, that’s a whole different story. But look, she found that that that I talked to employees that look, I know people around here, you’re not happy here, I want you to be happy, right? I’m taking I’m focusing on the H and HR, right? 

Ricky Baez  47:19
Because if I do everything to keep you here, and you’re not being fulfilled here, there’s nothing I can do again, I got a hostage situation that could turn ugly. I’d rather you be happy somewhere else, right? And she and I butthead and she’s like Vicki, stop, stop pushing people away. And she learned how I roll. And she learned how to deal with this. And so we’re best friends now. Hi, Holly. I’m gonna send this to her.

Pete Newsome  47:40
So so maybe we agree on that. So if this is going to be universally used, maybe the question could be how do you feel about the level of interpersonal interaction across the team?

Ricky Baez  47:50
May you go? There you go. 

Pete Newsome  47:52
Yeah, just when it gets to the social part. It’s weird, it’s a weird deal. Some companies do very well by playing together as much as they work and other companies are very effective and great to work for Biden by not going in that area at all. So I think it’s it’s just I just universally, I think it’s it’s not the best question. So we’re down to seven. But let’s keep going. All right.

Ricky Baez  48:20
Number six.

Ricky Baez  48:21
How do you prefer to be recognized for work well done? I love this one, Pete. Because if we get this one wrong, it can backfire. Big time. Big time, big time. I don’t know if I told you the story about the organization. I worked for one guy who was an introvert. 

Ricky Baez  48:40
He was a marketing professional. They had a contest. And he’s an introvert kind of guy he keeps to himself, but he’s really good at what he does. I get it marketing introvert, but that doesn’t really work well. But he does such a phenomenal job. He won that contest, right? He won like ten grand. I forgot what it was was a great contest. 

Ricky Baez  48:57
And the in and the VP in front of the the the town hall of 400 people. He called them up on stage. Hey, come up here, Jordan. He’s up. Everybody’s clapping. And he is freaking out. He’s sweating. He’s sweating through his shirt. He’s about to pass out on stage. Everybody’s clapping. And I’m like, Oh my God, because I know he was an introvert and I’m like poor Jordan. 

Ricky Baez  49:20
And I’m thinking, please don’t pass out. Please don’t pass out. Because I care about him. And I don’t want to do the worker’s comp paperwork, right? A lot of then afterward, I talked to the VP. I’m like, Hey, have you noticed how, how much he was waiting up there? He was like, no, no. Why? And I’m like, dude, he’s an introvert. 

Ricky Baez  49:39
He doesn’t like to be in front of people like that. What you just did single-handedly. So you’ve, you’ve ensured that that never happens again. And that’s when they hit him. He’s like, ah, and I talked to him. I’m like, Jordan, you get he’s like, dude, can I go home? Go? I got this.

Pete Newsome  49:58
Okay. Okay, so I’m devil The Advocate with the SS is apparently my role today with these questions. But is that practical to accommodate? How do you like to be? It recognizes if you get 10 different answers in every company’s different to accompany, you know, the size of four quarter resources, whether roughly 35 employees, we can be really flexible and agile and how we do things. 

Pete Newsome  50:26
But when it’s 3500 employees or 35,000 employees, not so much, or even 350 employees, that’s probably as hard as anything else. Because that’s your, your in between at that point. So it is the goal if the goal is to know what’s on the employee’s mind and accommodated, as best you can create if the goal is to take whatever the employee wants and give it to them. 

Pete Newsome  50:59
Not great, because I guess what I look at is that if I ask and there’s a decent chance I can’t accommodate it, was I better to not ask in the first place?

Ricky Baez  51:11
Or tell them why you can accommodate it? Right? Because Wouldn’t that build a bigger bond as to saying, Look, I can’t do that. And here’s why. Let’s have a conversation about why that is. But I’m not looking at this question. As the actual reward. I’m looking at this question as the delivery of the reward.

Pete Newsome  51:30
I get it right? I want to be given gift cards. Well, we don’t do for whatever reason in our company can’t ever give gift cards not going to happen. Okay, what do we do about that? Sorry, thanks for your answer. Prepare to be disappointed. suddenly turn into the US press secretary, lower your expectations. Sorry, that’s as far as close as I’ll get to that line.

Ricky Baez  52:06
I get it. It’s so so it’s one of those questions that depending on where you are with your, but you know what Pete even then let’s say it’s 3000, is a 3000 employee organization. I wouldn’t expect you to know everybody’s names. But I would expect my leaders to have a relationship with their employees enough. 

Ricky Baez  52:25
So my leaders know. And they would know how people like to be recognized. But I’m here for you if they say, Oh, how would I want to be recognized? Oh, give me $10,000. We can’t let me tell you why that’s not going to happen. Right? Let’s, let’s level set expectations on that.

Pete Newsome  52:43
But, but I’m gonna do within reason. And I’ll still say at least I know where your head is. Because whether we talk about that out loud, whether you’ve said it to me, directly, that is what you’re thinking. And so at least it gives me a chance to address it if I can accommodate it. Right?

Pete Newsome  53:01
Okay, Ricky. You really want gift cards. Here’s why we can’t do that. Besides the organization. It’s impractical. It’s not what we do and instead, we do it this way. But we’ll where possible. We’ll take you what you’re asking for into consideration. We’ll run up the front flagpole. So maybe there’s merit and benefit just of doing that. Even if you can’t solve it by? 

Pete Newsome  53:28
I’ll concede this, that if you as an employee share with me what you want and something I’ll never be able to accommodate for whatever reason. Hopefully, I’ll make you feel better by explaining why.

Ricky Baez  53:42
Exactly. I was just about I was. That’s what I wanted to start real quick. Look, sometimes if you can’t do it, employees appreciate the good faith effort, like a real authentic, good faith effort, and say, Look, I don’t know, I don’t know if I can get that. But let me go ahead and see what I can do.

Pete Newsome  53:57
And we’ve talked about this whereas the employee if you’re listening, you have to be prepared. If you offer a suggestion. It doesn’t mean it can be implemented. 

Pete Newsome  54:11
And don’t be disappointed by that. And I would say always offer the suggestion because it shows that you care and you’re interested. But just don’t take it personally. If your organization can’t, can’t facilitate whatever you’ve you’ve suggested

Ricky Baez  54:28
100% True. It’s because not not not every organization can do it. Just the fact that they looked into it. I mean, says a lot. Yep. Right to see if you can or not, but not, not every Amazon wishlist is fulfilled.

Pete Newsome  54:42
Exactly. All right. We move on.

Ricky Baez  54:45
Yes. Here’s that next one. This is similar to a previous one. Number seven. Is there any aspect of the organization that you wish you knew more about?

Pete Newsome  54:55
Now this one I feel entirely differently about.

Ricky Baez  54:59

Pete Newsome  55:00
Yeah. Because you’re, I’m not implying that you’re going to be involved. As much as I’m implying that the implication of the question is that you can be informed and aware. So, hey, well, we’ll help you gain exposure to what the social media team is doing, or where possible we can, you know, just make sure you’re in the loop with what their plans and objectives are, whatever it might be. 

Pete Newsome  55:29
But, I see that differently than being involved. Right. So knowing about being aware of great being involved, maybe not.

Ricky Baez  55:43
So if they say yes to that question, and next thing, you know, you’ll oh, I want to know about payroll, and they start learning more about it now that this does lead to it being involved? I mean, I think it kind of would, right? If they say yes to learning about another department or another area? And they like you so much. Now they want to be involved, I think this leads to the other one.

Pete Newsome  56:06
I guess I just semantics may be the way I’m interpreting it. But when I think of involved, I’m thinking you’re contributing, you’re going to meetings, and you’re at the very least taking time away from your core responsibilities. And what you could be involved in may be so far, from what you’re actually there to do. It just may not make sense. 

Pete Newsome  56:30
But I think it’s realistic to at least make someone aware of what the other department does, maybe hey, let’s let someone let’s add a manager from that group or a longtime employee, share, share what they do because I look at that as just inquisitive and interested and the organization a different aspect of it, maybe that person ultimately wants to move in that direction. 

Pete Newsome  56:55
And so it makes sense to me that if the accountant does want to know about social media, that social media person is, would be happy to share resources, or hey, let me tell you what we’re all about. Just spend a little time. And I don’t know, I just they sound different. To me, the request sounds different. Do you think it’s more similar than not?

Ricky Baez  57:17
No, it’s different. But I think this one leads into the other one. It’s because if you show them more about the other area that wants to know about and if there is a genuine sparked interest are going to want to be involved more. 

Ricky Baez  57:32
So awesome. I love payroll. Can I do that? No. Because I get it, right? It’s, I mean, it’s because you want them to be successful where they are you want it to be efficient in what you’re doing right now unless it’s a program. So we’re going to have programs that 20% of the time are dedicated to exploring other areas.

Pete Newsome  57:51
For organizations that can do those kinds of things and could accommodate it. Great. I just think awareness is a different level of commitment or involvement has an entirely greater level of commitment than involvement or awareness. I agree with that.

Ricky Baez  58:04
I get no I get it. Yeah.

Pete Newsome  58:06
I like awareness. Involvement, not so much.

Ricky Baez  58:11
We’re getting late in the show. 

Pete Newsome  58:12

Ricky Baez  58:14
Well, we got two more left. So number eight, what felt confusing or frustrating for you lately?

Pete Newsome  58:21
I love that. 

Ricky Baez  58:22
Yes, yes. And when now here’s, here’s what I want leaders to know if you’re going to employ this remember, folks, if you haven’t tried it, and I’m not talking about you guys, if if you haven’t tried to fix the culture, and you’re going to start doing it with this, the first few months, people are going to are not going to give you the answer you’re looking for they’re not going to be honest about it right? 

Ricky Baez  58:46
Now, you are going to have that 5% of people that just want you to know how horrible everything is. So I’m going to tell you anyway if they don’t ask. You don’t ask them they’re gonna tell you, right? They’re gonna tell you even if you don’t ask, if you like CrossFit, craft beer, or if they feel confused or frustrating for you, like, that’s what they’re gonna tell you, right? 

Ricky Baez  59:07
So if you, here’s what you need to be careful about as a leader. If you respond negatively, to anything they say, you almost certainly shut them down for any other of these one on ones in the future. Right?

Ricky Baez  59:22
Now, obviously, it depends on how the message is delivered, right? If just are cursing you out, left and right. Yeah, that’s a whole different situation. But if it fits, because you have to imagine if they feel frustrated, or confused, or especially frustrated about an initiative that you as leader care so much about that can sting that can really sting. 

Ricky Baez  59:43
And this is where leaders have to practice their poker face and make sure that take the emotion out of it and focus on the rationale on how to respond to this question. 

Pete Newsome  59:51
Yeah, and I like pairing it with question number one. So we start off by saying in the past few months, when have you felt most motivated? or energized in your work? And maybe you, leave off the if at all question and then follow that one up with what’s felt confusing or frustrating to you lately to me. That’s the yin and the yang of all this. 

Pete Newsome  1:00:15
So let me find out what’s best what’s going on really well and let me find out what isn’t. And I think maybe asking those things together or in the same conversation would help set the stage for the employee to feel comfortable with that second question, right? Because hey, aren’t you telling me what was good? That’s positive, we’re in a good place. Okay, what I know what you do, like, what don’t you like? 

Ricky Baez  1:00:45
I agree. I agree. It should have been part of the question, but it almost feels like a was part of question one, but they broke it into just to have an even number. In an odd number.

Pete Newsome  1:00:54
I’m sorry to think there were only two questions and the rest of the other seven were filler. Just can’t really write an article.

Ricky Baez  1:01:00
I’m getting there. You’ll be great at writing articles. It’ll be like Pete Newsome, here we go. Two ways for you to do great at work show up and be awesome. That’s great advice. I’ll follow that.

Pete Newsome  1:01:15
I mean, those aren’t. Those aren’t bad things. If we’re being honest. Right, right.

Ricky Baez  1:01:21
All right. So I’m with you there. So that should be part of question one.

Pete Newsome  1:01:24
But we really, but we agree, that’s a great question to ask. 

Ricky Baez  1:01:28
Yes, absolutely. Yes, please. It’s, but again, be careful how you respond to it. Right? You really got to keep your emotions to yourself, because this is the one that could get a little bit touchy.

Pete Newsome  1:01:38
I always talked about that. If you start off, if you’re committed to having this, and improve your organization, then you have to be committed to not reacting. In an immature fashion. I think that’s what when you mentioned Pokerface, well, if you do anything, but that if you do take it personally, that’s a sign of immaturity, professional immaturity, for sure, and people have to get there, right, as a leader, as a manager. 

Pete Newsome  1:02:10
It’s easy to feel hurt. But you’re looking at it the wrong way, you have to get to the point of accepting and we talked about this quite a few times already, on the show, that it people will always do what’s best for them. And that’s not yours to have an opinion. 

Pete Newsome  1:02:28
I mean, you can have it, but it’s not a relevant opinion. And that it being in staffing, we know that well, why do people not take a job? Because for whatever criteria they’re applying to that decision? It’s going the other way, that as recruiters if we’re doing our job, right, we shouldn’t be surprised by that answer. Because doing it right means we’ve dug into that individual’s motivation. 

Pete Newsome  1:02:57
And if someone says, I only care about salary, I’m gonna take whatever job pays the most. No ifs, and, or buts, and even if it means a 10-hour commute both ways, and my managers, a monster, and the whole thing. And if that’s what they’re gonna base their opinion on, it’s ours to understand, maybe we offer guidance to some degree, but even that is really not is not our place. Is it compared to just the need to truly understand the motivation and the drive of the individual? 

Pete Newsome  1:03:30
If they asked for our opinion, by all means, share it, right? But I think too often, the individual, the manager, or the recruiter, whatever the case might be, is looking to impart their own set of standards and their own ideals onto the individual and that’s a failing. That’s a failed path, you’re gonna go down, right? It’s going to end badly. Sorry, that’s just a hot button for me. No, I get it, I get it. Because everyone’s always gonna do what’s best for them by their own set of criteria.

Ricky Baez  1:04:07
It’s right. 

Ricky Baez  1:04:08
Alright, so the last one.

Ricky Baez  1:04:13
To what degree would you say the vision of the organization is clear? I’m just gonna say this. If most of your employees do not know, why the organization exists, and what is striving to do, there is a huge failing communication there. 

Ricky Baez  1:04:36
Huge fail and you’re not going to get as a leader, you’re not going to get to where you want to go. Your employees need to know what the mission of the organization is, and what the vision is, right? The vision is where you want to be the mission is how you’re going to get there. 

Ricky Baez  1:04:53
What are the steps that you’re going to get to that to that vision, and if as a leader of an organization if you don’t let your senior directors, your middle managers in front of the line managers know what their vision is, how can we possibly expect them to connect the dots between what the frontline employees do and how that affects the bottom line? 

Ricky Baez  1:05:12
So to me, that’s a big one that if there is a 90, is this point do a 1% chance that people do not know that has to be addressed immediately.

Pete Newsome  1:05:22
Alright, the question for you. If you’re not watching the video clip or on YouTube, this isn’t gonna, I’ll describe my hands as ballots right now. Right? Up and down. 

Ricky Baez  1:05:34

Pete Newsome  1:05:35
On one side of the balance is individual objectives. The other side is company objectives, the right company vision versus individual needs and wants, and how much. Where do you think that resides, right? The individual has the job that they love, but a company that lacks any vision that they care about, right? 

Pete Newsome  1:05:57
Conversely, a company with amazing vision, saving the world saving credit, and getting away with creating world peace, right? Eliminating hunger anywhere in the world is the noblest thing you could think of from a company vision standpoint. But the individual job is is is awful. So where do you think that that lies? Because we’re asking the question, we’re getting an answer. What I’m wondering is how much that matters.

Ricky Baez  1:06:35
How much does it matter? 

Pete Newsome  1:06:36
Yeah, that’s the question to the individual. Right? They’re in a job that they love. But they don’t really like the company’s mission. So we’re so on that on that scale, right? Where would you say, I keep moving my hands up and down, like, watching?

Ricky Baez  1:06:53
I get what you’re saying. So that’s a doozy. And you know, very rarely do I because I’m always quick on my feet. Right? And today, you’ve gotten me a few times.

Pete Newsome  1:07:02
I think I did. Well, these are very personal questions, right? We’re looking at someone’s what makes him show up today and tomorrow and every day after that or not? And I know, I’ll say I’ll answer that my own question to some significant degree. I think company vision matters a whole lot more today than it did. When I was getting out of school. Almost, almost 30 years ago, a long time ago.

Ricky Baez  1:07:34
You were in a whisper like, nobody’s gonna hear it was 30 years ago.

Pete Newsome  1:07:42
I think it matters a lot. But I asked that, but it’s really a question. I don’t know, the answer to it wasn’t to set you up. It’s just because I find it interesting. Where how much of that? I agree with you 1,000%. That it that should be communicated? 

Pete Newsome  1:07:58
Clearly, it should be communicated often what the company’s mission is, and what its objective is. And I think that’s a critical thing. I’m just wondering how much you think it matters individual at the individual level. 

Ricky Baez  1:08:15
Well, it’s so it’s making me pause because I start thinking about different organizations when the mission is clear. Right. But then I start thinking about other organizations where the mission is so clear that people sign up for tradition, for example, teachers, right, right. Nobody becomes a teacher to be a millionaire. We know why teachers become teachers, right? They care about the mission, they care about the vision, and they love teaching.

Pete Newsome  1:08:43
Individually? Not about the individual, about the school they work for necessarily.

Ricky Baez  1:08:52
That’s interesting, right? Because the school maybe not but they’re there that that’s right for them for that profession. It’s a different story because you’re right. They care about the students, not the venue, right? Some of them because some schools are crappy, right? 

Ricky Baez  1:09:08
But the crappy teachers still show up because there are students who don’t have a choice, right? And they care about the students. So that’s their vision and mission. So maybe that’s not or maybe that is a good example because that goes with what you’re saying individually. How does that align? So you translate that.

Pete Newsome  1:09:26
So let’s say I’m trying to think of an organization that on one hand, we could talk about Disney, right? There are many, many people who go work for Disney for the sake and opportunity of working for Disney because they love Disney so much easy to understand. I’m trying to come up with the other side of that equation where, you know, is it the tax collector’s office or something? 

Pete Newsome  1:09:54
I don’t want to say I can’t get on with the tax collector coming after me. But but but yeah, Something that no one dreamt of growing up, you know, as a child to say One day I want to work for, for this sort of mundane organization, but they love their job, right? 

Pete Newsome  1:10:11
They love what they get to do they love. I’ll go back to being an accountant, there are people who just love accounting and love numbers. And I get that because I, I would, I probably would have loved that as a profession, believe it or not, love spreadsheets. 

Pete Newsome  1:10:24
And I know weird, but I do. But so if I love my job, but didn’t care about the mission of the organization, is that important, even though I might know it? And they’ve communicated it to me, but I don’t. That’s not why I’m on the job. This is so far off-topic, but I was just curious.

Ricky Baez  1:10:41
No, but it’s important, though, Pete because it’s, I like the question because we, you’re, you’re challenging people’s people’s motivation, individual motivation, to the motivation of the organization. And you have to find that, that balance, because you’re right, you’re gonna It’s the teacher, what’s a great example, because they care about the students, not necessarily the school in which they’re teaching their students. 

Ricky Baez  1:11:05
So you translate that to what we’re doing right now in a for-profit organization, right? You could have some people, you couldn’t have some people that love what they do for their teams, but they don’t care to move up. They don’t care about the mission. But you don’t have to care about the mission to contribute to the mission. Right? 

Ricky Baez  1:11:26
Because if you love what you do, all right, all right, great reduction, that outcome is going to help the mission, they don’t have to love it for that to happen. So I guess there’s the balance, right? Whatever you put them to do, it’s got to benefit the reason the organization exists.

Pete Newsome  1:11:42
Well, I think you have to acknowledge that not every company is going to be Disney. Not every organization is going to be Apple. Yeah, it’d be it’s or Google wonderful that you get to work there. The other 99% of the population doesn’t get to work with an organization that people come all over the world to see. 

Pete Newsome  1:12:04
Or it’s the name, it’s the brand that people get excited about and stand in line to buy their products or have whatever it is about Google that’s so magical. But other than it’s Google, need to articulate that any further. It’s Google. So of course, it’s an awesome place to work. But that’s not a reality for most so so the mission, I don’t know that. I think the mission could be important. 

Pete Newsome  1:12:32
It’s great. I also think, and maybe this is something we should explore and research a little bit for a future show. I really do believe what I was getting out of school, the employees didn’t think about that as much if they didn’t place as great a value on the mission of the organization as they do today. And maybe that’s why companies are struggling with retention to some degree because they don’t have a mission that resonates with their younger staff. 

Pete Newsome  1:13:02
I bet if we did a survey, and this is complete, just conjecture on my part, that but I think it’s probably I put money on it as that, that I’d put my money where my mouth is on this, that if you polled 100, people who were in generate in my generation versus 100, of, of Gen Z, the Gen Zers, as a percentage would care significantly more about the organ, the mission of their employer, than folks in Generation X. 

Pete Newsome  1:13:34
Do you agree with that? 

Ricky Baez  1:13:35
I would agree with that. 

Pete Newsome  1:13:37
Why? Because I just think times have changed. I don’t have a scientific answer. 

Ricky Baez  1:13:42
Here’s why I would agree with that. Because before back in the day and the baby boomers and our or our era at the beginning part of Gen X. The idea was to just get a job, like a steady job, steady income weekly, bi-weekly, monthly, whatever the case may be until you get a pension. Right?

Ricky Baez  1:14:00
I remember growing up that’s all my mom said, Get a job that has a pension. I don’t care what it is to get a pension. Right. So event that that quickly changed for me once I started realizing that that’s that that P we’re starting not to exist anymore. 

Pete Newsome  1:14:15
So you just made a perfect example. So I just thought of a boring industry making cars right? Nothing sexy about making Ford automobiles. 

Pete Newsome  1:14:26
Making Tesla’s on the other hand to make the world if you believe that Tesla’s are helping the planet, although there’s some question about lithium batteries, you know, not at all helping the planet and the energy needed to mine those and all that but just on the surface, you could see why it’d be really exciting to work for Tesla or SpaceX, but not so much to work for Ford.

Ricky Baez  1:14:54
But the seats are not man you’re putting me on the fence though.

Pete Newsome  1:14:58
But does that matter? Right like it Is it? Is it what he does?

Ricky Baez  1:15:02
I think it’s for let’s say, let’s say you and I work, you and I first meet for the first time in 1912, whenever for was really big, and we’re working with the assembly line, you know, there’s something about working with your hands and pride that comes with it that’s attached to the name of the organization you’re working for. Right? It’s a skill, right? So there’s a pride there. And I don’t know how that pride connects or interacts with the vision of the organization.

Pete Newsome  1:15:32
Well, back then.

Ricky Baez  1:15:33
Dude, you got me on that.

Pete Newsome  1:15:35
Back Ford was different, right? Ford was ridiculously innovative and they were changing the world as an organization of their time. It was, I think, even more extreme, right? I mean, yeah, when you look at what they did, and some of the innovations I just was listening to, to an audiobook the other day talking about the innovations they made in creating what is become became modern assembly lines, they were so far ahead of their time and every possible way. 

Pete Newsome  1:16:07
But now, it’s like, the reason I thought of Ford is when you talked about working for a big company and collecting a pension. And I know that was a thing in the American auto industry, it just sounds mundane to me. 

Ricky Baez  1:16:22
Wait a minute, didn’t Ford? This is a real agreed example that they didn’t Ford give employees an insane discount, or a really interesting way to purchase a Ford vehicle. That way the employees know what the organization was making that you have that pride in the organization. 

Ricky Baez  1:16:44
I thought Ford was the first business owner are the first organization to start lending out cash for employees to buy a vehicle, and they’ll pay it back with a huge discount via payroll deduction. So he did that quite a bit. Because that was there no there was no better advertising than word of mouth. Right? 

Ricky Baez  1:17:07
And the people who can say that, hey, I built this car, look how great it is. And people see that pride in it. So to me, that was a great way for Ford to connect the work the organization is doing with the mission that he had.

Pete Newsome  1:17:19
All right, I’m gonna find it. We’re so how about a steel mill? Can we come? But even that, you know, there’s, so maybe I’m looking at this wrong, maybe the reality is the motive, the goal, the organization should there’s there should be pride, and there should be something important about the mission of every organization, but I’m sure we can come up with, with some examples that I just think. I think both are important. 

Pete Newsome  1:17:58
But I think the mission of the organization is more important today than it’s ever been. And that’s worthy of further exploration that we’re not going to do today. So we’ll come up with how to have that be its own show. But still, I like this question. But I think where it’s going is you’re gonna have some interesting conversations and a follow-up from that.

Ricky Baez  1:18:22
So we got six questions overall that we’re going to continue with.

Pete Newsome  1:18:25
We love six. We love two, we’re okay with six.

Pete Newsome  1:18:32
All right.

Ricky Baez  1:18:32
This was good. I liked this.

Pete Newsome  1:18:34
This is good. You brought a good topic to the table today. So we’re gonna have to raise the bar for next time. I think we’re due for q&a, though. I’ve seen a couple of questions. So Friday, I think we’ll do we’ll do q&a this week. 

Ricky Baez  1:18:46
Yes, sir. 

Pete Newsome  1:18:46

Ricky Baez  1:18:47
Definitely. We’ll do it.

Pete Newsome  1:18:48
All right, man. Thank you.

Ricky Baez  1:18:50
No, thank you. It was great. Folks, please let us know how you feel about the show. Give us a like and give us your review on your favorite platform.

Ricky Baez  1:18:58
Download us! We would love to hear from you and email us your q&a questions, which is 

Pete Newsome  1:19:08
That’s it and you can find that on the 4 Corner Resources website easy enough to find a podcast section like Ricky said we’d love it if you subscribe and review us five stars of course. And thank you for listening and drive safely and we’ll be back to talk again soon.

Ricky Baez  1:19:26
Have an awesome week, guys.

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